The Good, The Bad and The Scary...

by Carmen Cruz

Today is Thursday, February 18th

We started out by hopping on to the Bombardier shuttle train, which goes back and forth between Granville Island and 2nd and Cambie. It's free and the train itself is much nicer than most of the vehicles I've ever owned. Nice leather handles to hold onto and comfy leather seats. A nice ride and lineups move pretty fast. Be prepared to get to know your neighbour pretty well though, because they pack you in like sardines.

Our first stop was over at Sochi House (Russia) which is basically in Science World. You walk in and are at first dazzled by the lights and music, but......that's about it. The people working there aren't what I'd call the most conversational or 'social'. Not that I have anything against Russians. I don't. I think they're pretty fantastic actually! Perhaps I caught them all on a bad day? Maybe. Either way, the security guards there were pretty intense. When I asked for someone to give me a tour and to tell me why people should come to Sochi house, I was immediately shot down (because I'm considered media. Boo-Urns!!!!) There's honestly not much to see, unless you're interested in checking out who the corporate sponsors will be for the next Olympics. If you're into reading up or finding out more about the Sochi Olympics, this might be a good stop for you. They also play Russian movies every few hours in their theater and once in a while, prominent Russian athletes visit the House during the day.The highlight of our stop was the gift shop. See video.

Next Sandra and I headed over to Saskatchewan house. Again, nothing crazy about that house, but at least the people were super friendly! The highlight there was the booth where you can get your photo taken with a giant fake fish (they make it look like you're in the great outdoors) and the beer tent, which definitely has potential.

Masion du Quebec or Quebec House is right next door. It's got a good mix of indoor and outdoor space, and free performances by some of Quebec's best and coolest musical artists. (I'm telling ya, give Quebecois music a try. I studied there for a bit and got hooked on it!). They also have Cirque-Du-Soleil style performers who come out every hour or so and put on mini performances. Cool. Their food is also fantastic. I highly recommend the sugar pies. They'll BLOW YOUR MIND!!!! FYI: Most performers hit the stage AFTER 5:30pm.

Nest Stop, Ontario House. We checked out the 4D Ontario ride, which was FANTASTIC! It's about 6 minutes long and you watch scenes of Ontario. What makes it 4D is that you can also small and feel what happens on the screen. Cool huh? It's definitely worth the line up (which yes, WILL be long). There's also a section where you can try out this weird headgear that transmits your brain waves so you can control the lights at the CN Tower, Parliament Building and Niagara Falls. Cool to try.
The highlight of Ontario House is their Micro brewed beers, which only cost about $6. Wine costs about the same, which is a great deal. Most houses charge $8 - $10. Ouch! It's also the perfect venue to watch concerts and games, but line up early!!! (Line ups aren't as bad as Atlantic Canada House).

Final stop? Molson Hockey House. We had those $500 VIP tickets, but I can tell you this; the $99 ones are just as good, if not better. And to be honest, I had WAY more fun partying at Ontario House and Alberta House. At night, those places are THE PLACE to be. Reasonable drink prices and a cool crowd. How can you ask for more? So please, save your money for something that isn't just about status. Just have fun, n'kay? :)